Monday, July 3, 2017

Canh Suon Khoai Tay (Vietnamese Spare Rib Soup) #FoodieExtravaganza


Foodie Extravaganza is where we celebrate obscure food holidays or cook and bake together with the same ingredient or theme each month.

Posting day for #FoodieExtravaganza is always the first Wednesday of each month. If you are a blogger and would like to join our group and blog along with us, come join our Facebook page Foodie Extravaganza. We would love to have you! If you're a spectator looking for delicious tid-bits check out our Foodie Extravaganza Pinterest Board! Looking for our previous parties? Check them out HERE.

Sneha of Sneha's Recipe is hosting this month. And she requested that we create dishes with spare ribs this month. "Braised, Slow Cooked or grilled or as side dish preparation ... make the way your family will enjoy," she encouraged us.

The Spare Rib Smörgåsbord


About Spare Ribs...
So, when I first saw Sneha's pick, I had to do some reading about the difference between "ribs" and "spare ribs." I don't usually think about that; to me, ribs are ribs. But, I was so wrong! 


The Enthusiastic Kitchen Elf pulled out some reference books - I'm not actually sure in which he found it, but I know he pulled out Farm Anatomy and Food Anatomy - and figured it out for me.


Spare ribs are the ribs cut from the belly of the animal and are formed by cutting away the breastbone The slab is more rectangular in shape. Back ribs are cut from where the rib meets the spine after the loin is removed. The upper ones are called baby back ribs. These are the ones I usually buy.


But, having taken part in this event, and testing several recipes, including Sticky Sesame Spare Ribs (photo above!), I realized three things: (1) spare ribs cost less per pound, (2) spare ribs are more evenly sizes, so they cook uniformly, and (3) my family really, really, really likes spare ribs. So, these will be my go-to ribs from now on. Thanks, Sneha!

Canh Suon Khoai Tay
Vietnamese Spare Rib Soup

For this recipe, ask your butcher to cut the spare ribs to 1-1/2" lengths. For this dish, I ended up with two 1-1/2" strips; then, I cut in between the bones for individual pieces 1-1/2" long.


Ingredients

  • 2 lbs pork spare ribs, sliced into 1-1/2" pieces
  • 1/4 C fish sauce 
  • 1 T gluten-free soy sauce or tamari
  • 1/2 t ground black pepper
  • 2 large shallots, peeled and diced and divided in half
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed and divided in half
  • 1 t minced lemongrass
  • 1 t fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 T oil (I used olive oil)
  • 9 C water
  • 2 to 3 large organic carrots, approximately 2 C
  • 3 to 4 small organic potatoes, approximately 2 C
  • 1 small head organic cauliflower, approximately 2 C florets
  • freshly ground salt, as needed
  • freshly ground pepper, as needed
  • 1 scallion, trimmed and thinly sliced for garnish


Procedure
Blanching the ribs ahead of time creates a cleaner broth. You can skip this step, certainly, but it's not difficult and the product is much clearer. Fill a stock pot halfway with water and bring to a boil. Gently drop the spare ribs into the water and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water until the water runs clear. Now you're ready for the recipe.


Place the fish sauce, soy sauce, black pepper, shallot, garlic, ginger, and lemongrass in a mixing bowl. Add in the ribs, toss to coat, and marinate for at least 30 minutes. Turn them once or twice during that time.

In a large soup pot, add vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, add the remaining shallots and garlic. Cook until fragrant, approximately 2 minutes. Add in the marinated spare ribs and the marinade. Stir into the oil and aromatics. Cook for another minute or two.

Pour in the water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Simmer for 45 minutes.

Add in the vegetables and food until fork tender. I stagger them, adding first the carrots and cooking them for 5 to 6 minutes; then, adding the potatoes and cauliflower.

Cook until all of the vegetables are easily pieces with a fork. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mine didn't really need any more seasoning.


To serve, ladle into individual serving bowls and garnish with thinly sliced scallions. Serve immediately.

Next month Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm has us using peaches. Stay tuned!

4 comments:

  1. A nutritious and earthy soup.

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  2. Ribs make the best soup broth, don't they, Camilla?! It's all the bones, I guess. I could eat a beautiful light soup like this all year round.

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  3. I love the tip about blanching the ribs first for a clear broth. Thanks Cam.

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  4. This sounds tasty, I can imagine what a fantastic broth the ribs make.

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